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The History of Lake Gaston Association
The Association was conceived in September 1988 by a group of concerned lake residents who realized that it was essential to protect the natural beauty of the lake while encouraging quality residential and commercial development. Because the property owners were spread throughout five counties and two states, many of who were part time residents with little or no voice or vote in local affairs, the founders determined that an organization that could speak with one voice to local governments on lake-related affairs was necessary. One of their primary concerns at the time was the high taxes being paid by lake property owners, hence the original name The Lake Gaston Taxpayers Association.
The organizers quickly found, however, that the interests of their members, then numbering approximately 500 families, were much broader than simply tax matters. In the spring of 1989, this realization led them to change the name of the organization to the Lake Gaston Association. The original 12 Directors identified three objectives for the Association:
- To protect and advance the natural advantages, beauty and wholesome quality of life in the Lake Gaston area by ensuring the rights and concerns of all its members are heard and given full consideration in local, state, and federal government councils.
- To find ways to contribute to the economy of the area and the well being of its citizens through the participation of its membership in worthy local activities.
- To encourage voter registration and participation in local, state and national elections.
Throughout the intervening years, those three objectives have remained the very core of the Association’s activities. Its membership has grown to over 1,300 households and businesses, and as its scope of involvement has expanded, so too has its Board of Directors to 25 – four from each of the five counties and five at large seats.
Issues that have confronted property owners and the LGA since 1988 have been many and varied. They include taxes, noxious aquatic weeds, water quality, zoning and rezoning requests, power boat racing, emergency responses, navigation safety, hunting safety, fish stocking, the Virginia Beach pipeline, FERC relicensing, erosion control, police protection, flood zone mapping and many others.
Today, although the wording of the Association’s objectives has changed slightly, the Directors feel that their mission is essentially the same: To identify lake issues affecting our members and pursue resolution with the responsible organizations. In this five-county two-state environment, the voice of the individual household and business property owner would be lost were it not for the LGA.